How Mistborn help me to write better (1)

There is no better way to learn how to write by reading what you love. I figure out that while I immerse in the world weaved by Brandon Sanderson. His writing helps me to take a careful and close look at my field notes. It gives me the tool to transform the notes into narratives.

Here is one example from Sanderson’s book. The plot goes that Elend was challenged by his friend about his new position as the emperor. I particular like the way how Sanderson described Elend’s thoughts.

Example 1. Making thoughts visible

“So you become the Lord Ruler instead?”

Elena hesitated. It felt odd to have another confront him with his own questions and arguments. Part of him felt a stab of fear–if Teldon asked these things, then Elend had been right to worry about them. Perhaps they were true.

Yet, a stronger impulse flared within him. An impulse nurtured by Tindwyl, then refined by a year of struggling to bring order to the shattered remains of the Final Empire.

An impulse to trust himself. 

“No, Teldon,” Elend said firmly. “I am not the Lord Ruler. …” 

–The Hero of Ages p.280 

I like the parts when the characters find who they are. I enjoy celebrating the moment of clarity with the characters. That’s probably why I revisited more than five times the parts when Harry Potter got the lucky portion and got the information about Horocrux from Slughorn. 

In addition to making thoughts visible, to make a story great, it is very important to make good use of contrast. A good amount of contrast (and humor) makes reading the text tolerable. 

To graduate, I need to make my writing to carry an engaging plot so the readers could tolerate and bear with me.

Example 2. Contrast (and humor)

“Do you know why I dislike men like you, Venture?” Women finally asked.

“My insufferable charm and wit?” Elena asked. “I doubt it’s my good looks–but, compared to that of an obligator, I suppose even my face could be enviable.”

Yomen’s expression darkened. “How did a man like you ever end up at a table of negotiation?”

“I was trained by a surly Mistborn, a sarcastic Terrisman, and a group of disrespectful thieves,” Elend said, sighing “Plus, on top of that, I was a fairly insufferable person to begin with. But, kindly continue with your insult–I didn’t mean to interrupt.”

–The Hero of Ages p.284

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